Famous '2001' spaceship to go on display

Story highlights

  • A shuttle from "2001: A Space Odyssey" was purchased by the motion picture academy
  • It will be put on display to the public for the first time
  • The 1968 classic is considered one of the most influential science-fiction movies ever

(CNN)After decades in private hands, a spaceship from the classic film "2001: A Space Odyssey" will go on display for the first time to the public.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the group that presents the Oscars, purchased the spacecraft at auction Saturday for $344,000. The academy will display the ship in its museum of movie history, scheduled to open in 2017 in Los Angeles.
"We're excited to add such an iconic piece of movie history to our collection," the academy told CNN in a statement. "We look forward to sharing the '2001' Aries 1B Trans-Lunar Space Shuttle with the public once the Academy Museum opens."
    The Aries spacecraft, moments before touching inside the great Lunar crater Clavius in a scene from the film '2001: A Space Odyssey', 1968. (Photo by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/Getty Images)
    In case you're wondering, the craft is the spherical lunar lander that transports Dr. Heywood R. Floyd to the moon in "2001."
    Sorry, it's not the Discovery One, the spaceship where mission pilot Dave Bowman later famously implored the ship's computer to "open the pod bay doors, HAL."
    A collector and former art teacher in the UK had kept it for the past 40 years.
    According to the auction house, the spaceship is one of the few sets left from the 1968 film.
    Almost all the props, sets, models and costumes from "2001: A Space Odyssey" were destroyed by director Stanley Kubrick so they could not be used in other productions, the Premiere Props auction house said.